It was early Monday morning when John asks me, is it 6 am already Dave. I responded to him, its 4 am, and he rolls over and goes back to sleep. The alarm never fulfilled it’s purpose as we rolled out of bed around 5:30 am and headed to our morning coffee and devotions by 6 am.
In the stillness of the morning, we began our day. With our tummies full and our hearts prepared for the day ahead, we hit the road. Our journey took us towards our build site and a road that wove through a community and some pretty gnarly dirt roads.
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We saw one house, but we were not sure where the other one was until he pointed to the top of the hill. Located on a vista outlook that was truly a million dollar view we made our way to the top of the hill. It involved some sketchy sand beneath our tires, but we made it.
Looking out over the landscape, you could see the sea in the distance with the marine layer resting on the foothills and the other house we were building below us.
I soon realized that the quickest way between houses and capturing the moments was a quick walk up & down a steep hill versus driving around each time.
The home building commenced with a time of prayer over the foundation of the house, and then it was time to kick it into gear and get the walls up as quickly as possible.
The painting crews for both homes killed it, although they did seem to get a fair amount of paint on them. Isn’t that the joy of painting?!
Whether you were young or old, you could serve equally. You do not have to be a master craftsman to use your gifts for transforming a family’s life. Transformation starts with building a house and leads to doors of conversations that transform the hearts of the people we are serving as well as ourselves.
It’s amazing how quickly the day goes when you are working. After my second trip up and down the hill between homes, it was almost noon. I realized I better figure out how to get the VBS crew from the homes to the church. It was recon time!
I hit the dirt roads and followed the simple directions from the YUGO photographers, and quickly found my way to the church with a few too many left turns.
Back to the homes I headed for a quick lunch, another walk up and down the hill, and gathering the VBS team. It was time for VBS!
Vacation Bible School (VBS)
As we wove our way through the neighborhood of paved and dirt roads, the familiar sight of the dirt lot next to the church came into view. The pastors greeted us with enthusiasm and joy.
All good VBS’ start and end with a quick soccer game – I think it’s somewhere in the Bible :).
In the neighborhood, some schools have already concluded for the year and some have not. The school day quickly came to a close and kids started to make their way to the church for a time of fun in the sun, music, hearing God’s Word, crafts and of course soccer.
Smiles and laughter illuminated the church courtyard. The day began with ten children funneling in throughout the first hour of VBS. When I returned to pick up the VBS crew, it seemed like the number of children doubled. Tomorrow should be even more.
This morning we started with two slabs of concrete, a pile of wood, and unfinished siding in need of paint. When we left this evening, there were two homes with beautifully painted siding, roof joists, cutouts for the doors and windows, and rough electrical.
On one of my many walks up and down the hill, I realized that the home of one of our families was just below their new house we were building. It is hard to comprehend the vast difference between what these families have today, and what tomorrow means for them.
It means hope. It means a better future. It means a brighter future. It means tomorrow will indeed be better than today. When they woke up this morning, they saw an empty slab of concrete and the promise that tomorrow would look different than today.
When they awake tomorrow, their reality will be the extension of God’s blessings and their dreams coming true.
It is exciting to see how God uses us, ordinary people, to make a difference in the lives of a few people. We do not know how God will use these homes to change generations to come because a few people came and were used to build a home on a slab of concrete.